An estimated two-thirds of the US gross domestic product (GDP) comes from retail consumption.
According to the latest annual report from the US Commerce Department, total retail sales in 2011 were $4.7 trillion.
Before the internet, retailing was understood to be the sale of goods or merchandise from a fixed location in small units for direct purchase and consumption by the consumer. While 'channels' such as mail order catalogs were always a component of retailing it is the internet that has expanded the scope of modern retailing.
Retailers are the last link of the supply chain that links manufacturers to consumers in a distribution strategy.
The variety of products that is now offered by retailers covers the entire spectrum of commerce:
|Clothing & Apparel||Personal Products|
|Home Furnishings||Leisure and Recreational Products|
|Consumer Electronics||Office Equipment|
The Retailing data models address business-wide data, reporting and analytic requirements.
|Product||Credit & Collections|
|Inventory||Business Metrics & Analytics|
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